Builders’ bags help to plug gap in Winterton dunes

PUBLISHED: 15:00 18 April 2014

Long Beach, Winterton-on-Sea - work to repair storm surge damage at the Long Beach gap

Long Beach, Winterton-on-Sea - work to repair storm surge damage at the Long Beach gap


Builders’ bags filled with sand have been used to plug a gap in Winterton dunes.

The Long Beach gap suffered extensive damage during the December storm surge.

On the night the North Sea destroyed several homes just a mile up the beach in Hemsby, the crashing waves pulled down part of the dunes and made the natural walk-through wider.

Some residents were worried the sea would break through the gap and into the valley beyond if there was another tidal surge.

But the hole has been repaired thanks to a joint venture between Winterton Parish Council, Hemsby Parish Council and Great Yarmouth Borough Council.

The work, commissioned by the borough council, was approved by Natural England and the landowner, John Groat, following consultation with the Environment Agency.

A contractor has placed 31 sand-filled builders’ aggregate bags (one tonne grab bags) across the gap in the dunes, forming a staggered line within the low part of the dunes so people and dogs can still pass through.

The intention is to offer some protection in the event of another surge.

James Cole, who runs Winterton Valley Estate holiday chalet park close to the gap, provided the labour for the work.

The bags were filled with sand from Yarmouth’s Central Beach and transported by road to Hemsby car park and then by dump truck along the beach to the site. The bags – the tops of which has just be seen sticking out of the sand, are expected to have a life of about five years. The sand used is a match for the existing sand within the dune area.

The entire scheme cost £4,173, with £500 coming from Winterton and Hemsby parish councils and the rest from the borough council.

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